Shenandoah: An Anthology

James Boatwright, Editor Pushcart Press $28 (512p) ISBN 978-0-916366-33-9
Over the past 35 years, Shenandoah, the Virginia-based literary quarterly, has published many famous writers and discovered others. The contributors to this anthology are a who's who of recent poetry and fiction. Poets represented include Auden, Pound, Williams, Stevens, Cummings, Dickey, Moore, Eberhart, Spender, Merrill. The selections, however, are not always their best work. Among the memorable stories are Jean Ross's ""Unfinished Business,'' about a divorced woman's involvement with her former mother-in-law; Joyce Carol Oates's vivid account of a small girl's reaction when her father is apparently beaten to death; Barbara Thompson's slice-of-life about an American emigree suffocating in her marriage to a Pakistani; and contributions by Flannery O'Connor, Jean Stafford, Edmund White, Reynolds Price. Many of the stories have Southern settings, but others do not. The essays are a smorgasbord of opinions. Katherine Anne Porter calls Lady Chatterley's Lover ``a very laboriously bad book.'' Richard Howard praises Rodin as the last artist for whom art and religion were one, and Ford Madox Ford perversely warns writers never to use conversation to develop plot or advance action. January 3
Reviewed on: 02/01/1986
Release date: 02/01/1986
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